StPYG has three 8-week sessions each year for which teens register to participate. During these sessions we meet every Wednesday, 7-8:30pm
Why have students register?
In 2016, StPYG dropped the "drop-in" method and began using a model of registering students with the goal of fulfilling more directly our mission statement through a focus on relational ministry and intentional discipleship.
Since implementing this model we have witnessed the positive impact this change has had on our youth group community in many ways. By requiring registration, teens are encouraged to make faith formation a staple of their week. Our attendance has increased, and teens who attend are statistically more likely to continue coming. We see greater personal investment and deeper relationships being formed. We have also seen an increase in the evangelization confidence and skills of our registered teens.
Registering teens for our program allows us the ability to form consistent small groups that teens meet with during a portion of our gatherings. With greater capacity to invest in the teens who have committed to growing in faith with us, we can truly begin to "make disciples who make disciples." Read more about how this fits into our mission statement on our About Us page.
Here's a sneak peek at a typical Wednesday night youth group gathering:
Mingling Time - Teens arrive at 7pm. We enjoy some mingling time, hanging out, playing Ping Pong, playing "Nope" ball (a StPYG original) and just generally catching up with friends and getting to know each other. We also have dessert (donated each week by a youth group member.)
Game Time - Then we play a group game. We've done everything from classic Game Show adaptations to gym scooter relays. Usually just silly stuff that gets everyone involved and having fun.
Main Message - Following along with the theme of the session, teens gather around to hear the message of the night from either one of our adult leaders, a guest speaker, or video content. We focus on entering into authentic relationship with Christ and living out your Catholic faith as a high school student in 2018.
Small Group - After listening to the talk, students break out into their small group. Teens stay in the same small group each session so they are able to form relationships and build trust. Small group begins with sharing one good thing from your week and one not-so-great thing from your week. Then we discuss the message for the night, read scripture, ask questions, and apply the message to our every day lives.
Closing - We regather for announcements and a closing prayer. At the end of each session we pull a ticket and the winner gets a "crappy prize" from our prize table. We end the night at 8:30pm.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is the cost of participating in StPYG sessions? Our sessions are free for all teens. We do accept donations. We also have an opportunity for teens/families to donate dessert during our sessions.
What am I committing to by registering my teen? We ask that you only register your teen for a session if you believe your teen will be able to join us for the majority of the Wednesdays during that session (Please make a habit of planning ahead for homework and studying.) Teens who are registered are committing to making Wednesday night youth group a scheduled part of their week, which is a step towards developing a life-long habit of intentional faith formation.
What if my teen can't come to a gathering? We do understand that things come up (like concerts and family events) ...these teens lead busy lives! We do ask that you try your best to get them there, but missing a couple gatherings should not be too disruptive. To honor the commitment your teen has made, we ask that he/she or a parent please contact Cathy McTighe (email@example.com) to give her a heads up about missing a session date. The responsibility of making sure to take this step should belong to your teen who has made the commitment, even if you are the one who is contacting Cathy. Is the same content covered in each session? No. Each session has it's own theme or focus. Think of it like three different courses rather than the same course offered three times. If your teen misses the first session, he or she will not be behind at the start of the second session as we begin each session with a fresh start and new focus.
Do I have to register for all the sessions at the start of the year? No. This is part of the beauty of having three sessions- we know your calendars are always changing and you may not be able to commit far in advance. Register your teen for what you expect them to be able to do based on what you know now. You can come back later and register for a session if you aren't sure yet. Just remember that the registration closes for each session when that session begins. (Example: if the session begins Jan 4, Jan 4 is the last date to register for that session.)
Can I cancel a registration? If plans change and your teen can no longer participate in a session you registered him/her for PLEASE email firstname.lastname@example.org to let Cathy McTighe know not to expect your teen for that session.
Okay, we're registered! What happens now? You will receive an email from Cathy McTighe with additional information including a permission form. Please remember that your teen is welcome to attend any of our open events throughout the year, including events before his/her registered session(s). Video from 2016 Announcing Program Change For more information about the vision of our program design, view this video from the launch of our new model in 2016.
1st Sesh: Oct 4- Dec 6 COMPLETED 2nd Sesh: Jan 10th through February 28th COMPLETED 3rd Sesh: Mar 21st through May 9th HAPPENING NOW, REGISTRATION CLOSED